To Rent in LA

forrent.jpgTell me, what brainiac puts up a sign FOR RENT for $1,900 and gets no takers and then suddenly changes it to $2,000? ‘Tis true. At the corner of Sunset Blvd. & Westerly Terrace, someone just did a major rehab on a cute bungalow style duplex and are now asking $2K for a 2 bedroom one bath place. What’s more, if I were gonna jack up the rent like that Ö wouldn’t it make sense to invest an extra $8 in a new sign that didn’t have the old amount crossed out on there?

Boy have things changed.

When The Man and I moved to LA back in ’92, it seemed like cheap good housing was easily found. We arrived in our little car and got a motel room in the valley for TWO DAYS and found a place just by cruising the neighborhoods. We moved in, called for our furniture and made several trips to Ikea and we were done. Instant residence.

It’s not like that anymore. I don’t know if it was the quake the changed things or if it’s just that LA has too damn many people in it. Let’s face it, to BUY in LA is insane at the moment. Hell, I couldn’t afford to buy a house right now. I can’t imagine what it’s like for the folks who must buy.

Back in ’92 we settled in Sherman Oaks. We were afraid of venturing into a Hollywood apartment just yet, so we took a nice place on Moorpark and Woodman and figured it’d be temporary until we decided what neighborhood suited us.

Sure enough, a scant 16 months later we stumbled on the perfect apartment, duplex actually, in Silverlake. Not even the cool part of Silverlake at the time. We were up on Easterly Terrace near the end of the dead end. The place kicked Sherman Oak’s ass. Two bedrooms, hardwood floors, a deck that ran the length of the house and faced west for amazing sunsets and a slight view of the Hollywood sign if you positioned yourself correctly. Silverlake in ’94 wasn’t exactly “nice” yet. There were crackhouses. There was a gun battle down on Silverlake Blvd above our house one night (which caused a call from the Man to 911 where they had a hard time believing it was gunfire, even though it continued while he was on the phone).

Other than that, the place was amazing. Great location, huge kitchen, washer and dryer in the garage, one off street parking spot and some of the best neighbors of my life up til then (good neighbors now too).

We paid, get this, $1,000. There was a small yard and paid gardener. A responsive landlord and we usually got to pick our neighbors in the upstairs unit. Dog friendly to boot.

I understand inflation. I understand that the neighborhoods close to Sunset are much nicer than a few years back. And I’ll grant you that a nice coat of paint is a good thing, but I don’t think whatever they did warrants $1,900 for that corner. Certainly not $2,000. Maybe I’ve been out of the rental market for too long, but it’s not a great location – I mean, I wouldn’t live there (of course I also witnessed a gunman running from a shooting on that corner when we first moved, so what the hell do I know about good locations?)

But hey, if you’re interested, I can email you the number.

4 Replies to “To Rent in LA”

  1. As someone who just spent the first half of his Sunday walking all around Silver Lake looking for possible rentals, this post struck home. We already pay too much for a one bedroom here just south of Sunset, but the crazy housing market has made it extremely difficult to find reasonable housing prices, whether for rental or purchase. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look to get any better in the near future unless the Big One changes the landscape, figuratively and literally. Our search for a reasonably priced rental goes on via foot, Craigslist, and Westside Rentals!

    But after living thru the Dot Com years up in San Francisco I’d have to say this hasn’t reached the point of “completely ridiculous”….yet.

  2. That place is strictly for those rich imbeciles who pick up the latest copy of maxim, gq or variety and say, gee, i should move to silverlake since thats where the hip people are and thus I must be there too. Or kids who go to USC.

  3. I drive by that “For Rent” sign every night on my way home from work via Westerly and I also thought the owner was utilizing a rather strange marketing technique.

    And every single time I drive by it, I’m drinking a chai latte, talking on my phone with my hairdresser and applying another coat of this awesome lip gloss I saw in Glamour. It matches the paint on my Lexus SUV perfectly!

  4. Looking extremely sexy while driving is very dangerous for you and other gawking motorists. If you’re going to go ahead and be hot, please pull off to the side of the road.

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